Sunday, September 7, 2014

Double Feature: Midnight in Paris / Only Lovers Left Alive


Midnight In Paris - Nostalgia IS What its Cracked up to be

Midnight in Paris is one of the rare treats you will find in a movie these days, one that is both beautiful and classy while letting your imagination fly. Midnight In Paris is a wonderful movie about a nostalgic screenwriter who takes a vacation to Paris with his fiance and her conservative parents, hoping to find inspiration for his novel. At one point he gets lost in the streets of Paris while trying to walk home by himself and gets invited into a car that ends up transporting him to Paris in the 192Os. Here is where he meets his idols, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein, along with a whole host of legends such as Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Cole Porter and more. The music is just darling, the era is so much fun to watch, and check out Hemingway! Whoa! What a man. haha. Kind of screws up the grading curve in the gender, I must say. Too bad his life didn't end so well.

A night out with Hemingway is always a blast of manliness
This movie was magical for anyone who is a writer and has a love for previous eras in history. Beautifully written and directed by Woody Allen, it has a large swath of famous actors in it such as Owen Wilson, Adrian Brody, Rachel McAdams, Tom Hiddleston, Kathy Bates and more. They all play their roles beautifully and are strikingly well-casted for the people they portrayed. The story line is romantically kind, gentle and nicely done. Even the ending is quite satisfying even though things didn't work out as much as I imagined them to.

The only annoying thing about the movie is Rachel McAdam's character, Inez. The woman is incredibly annoying and stereotypical of a gold digging, materialistic female. Now I know she is basically the catalyst that makes Gil reflect on his life before marrying a woman of this type, but her character really frustrated the hell out of me. Which I guess is a good job to Rachel since that's probably what they were going for. Also Michael Sheen was awesome as the smug, pseudo-intellectual, Paul. He sounds like he would make a great intelligence professional, he's got diarrhea of the mouth. He can't help, but to spill knowledge whether people care or not. haha.

The mystery of the magical street at midnight is an interesting plot device in itself as a motive for transportation into another time. We all have wanted to go to a different world at times and writers are finding unique ways to bring us into that special world. In Harry Potter it was the train station platforms serving as a portal. For this movie, its a transportation vehicle of some sort from that era. For the 192Os it was a lavish 192Os style car, for other eras, I wonder how much simpler the vehicles become? Perhaps they strip down to horses and so on. I would have eagerly loved to be a part of a different era for the night. Especially with such friendly people that want to invite me to parties! Let me get ready to do the Charleston!

Reading the sheeple's opinions on the internets, some have stated that this film seemed anti-American, but I don't think it has anything to do with American sentiment at all. It has to do with learning to deal with the present and being honest with oneself. Hemingway and Fitzgerald were awesome as characters and Dali was just perfect with his line, 'I see rhinoceros!" If you have no idea who these people are, I suggest you check them out before you watch the film or it won't have as strong of an impact on you.

If you are looking for something that is subtly romantic, nostalgic and a dreamer's type of story, this is the movie for you. As a writer, you will love the premise and it delivers exactly what you hoped it would. So if you have time, I think everyone should check this movie out. You won't regret it.

DnD Rating: 9/1O



Only Lovers Left Alive - The Plotless Vampire Movie That Holds Your Attention

For those that are into vampires, here comes a sexy story that has no plot, but still piques your interest. The story revolves around vampires, Adam and Eve in the backdrop of Tangier, Morocco and Detroit Michigan. When Adam contemplates suicide, Eve travels to him to cheer him up. The two are reunited in loving embrace, but not for long when Eve's obnoxious sister, Ava visits and screws everything up. I guess even vampires have relatives they hate.

The movie is ungodly slow with the passage of time, has no real defining plot, but the characters are interesting enough for you to continue watching. It feels like you are just peeping into their lives and seeing the craziness of what eternity looks like. Adam is a depressed, reclusive musician that drones on about how horrible people are and refers all of them as "zombies" while Eve is more the free, loving spirit that seems to be the only thing that puts a smile on his face. He tinkers with instruments like a backwater scientist while she voraciously reads and has stacks of books lying everywhere in her room. They are lovers separated and yet need each other like two spiritually intertwined addicts.

The Sexy Vampire Couple
This is not the type of movie for everybody and some may not appreciate, nor understand the quality of the story involved. For those that need clean defining lines in a movie, this would be a terrible pick due to how abstract it is. Nothing major really happens and the most interesting thing that does is Eve's sister coming to visit [which at several points I swore Adam was going to murder her in cold blood].

However it is still enjoyable. Tom Hiddleston, who plays Adam, is great in this movie as the brooding, complex vampire. Tilda Swinton also does an amazing job as the patient and sweet-hearted lover. They both seem so chic and cool in their eternal brooding sort of way. They are weird stereotypes of the dark and brooding, hot, rock musician and the hippy Californian that found yoga, tea, and spirituality. Both of them seem to take to blood like heroin addicts looking for the next hit, which is different and interesting as a concept alone considering blood lust and feeding for vampires has always been a carnal thing. Here it seems more like a euphoric addiction that keeps them moving and without it, they suffer and become unmovable.

What is interesting is how much these two have saw over the centuries and the understanding of why Adam is so bitter. Many people he influenced has been persecuted or died over the years. The movie also has a heavy avant garde feel and surrounds itself with the sound of music/creative passion being the heart of the story telling, influencing the feel of each scene. This is a character driven piece and watching the couple in this movie is seductive in itself. They are a naturally beautiful, smoldering couple.

What the story also leaves behind are so many questions. How many vampires still exist in their world? What would they think of the culture of vampires in todays entertainment? How does Adam get money for his music if he is incredibly reclusive and only deals with Ian exclusively? Why are these two separated? What happens if they can't find anymore blood sources? Do they become so weak they start deteriorating? Do they become more animalistic? Does drinking blood compare to a high with drugs or more of a satisfying of hunger? Does Adam and Eve have sex [it was kind of implied...but I'm not even sure at this point]? And is Adam and Eve a coincidental name?

DnD Rating: 8/1O

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What did you think of these movies? Was Midnight in Paris what you expected? What about Only Lovers Left Behind?

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